LETTERS: The soul of our community


“Big things have small beginnings” sums up the birth of International Artist Day, Oct. 25.


“Big things have small beginnings” sums up the birth of International Artist Day, Oct. 25.

Inspired to give artists a day of recognition for their contributions to society, White Rock artist Chris MacClure conceived the idea and implemented it on the Internet in 2004.

Artists are the unseen and unsung creators in our midst, and we can barely touch a single thing that hasn’t its origin in art.

Whether it is design, architecture, culture, literature or everyday products, artists are the inspiration.  Creativity is the life force behind everything, and we need to find ways to honour our creative spirit through our artists.

Nurturing and moving IAD along bit by bit, the idea has taken hold on a global basis, with artists, whole cities, schools, galleries and art aficionados finding ways to celebrate and honor the artists in their communities.

To that end, the city of White Rock implemented an economic and arts task force to find ways of integrating business with the arts in South Surrey/White Rock. The IAD Festival was chosen as a vehicle to begin this amalgamation, and last year’s event was a huge success.

The backbone of any city or town are its artists, philosophers, writers, architects, engineers, artisans and all the other individuals who bring in the unseen heart and feeling dimensions to their communities.

We need to ask ourselves if we support those whose contributions enliven our lives, or do we take the expedient way out for ourselves and let others do the work? The kind of world we want for ourselves and our children we create for ourselves by our choices.

The Internet has done miraculous things for our lives, but the soul of our community comes from our arts and artists, and we ignore them to our peril.

Mega-box stores, the media, global economics and business in general would have us believe that saving money is a religious experience. Mass-produced items made off-shore by mega-manufacturers will save money to be sure – but at a very high price to your neighbourhood artisans, artists and businesses.

This year’s IAD Festival, Oct. 24-26, will take place at the White Rock Community Center on Russell Avenue, beginning with a not-to-be missed gala evening on the Friday.

Come and meet the artists and engage and surprise yourself with this unique one-of-a-kind venue.

Tickets for the gala can be purchased from Semiahmoo Arts Council by phone at 604-536-8333, or in person at 14601 20 Ave. – www.iadfestival.com

Marilyn Hurst, International Artists Day Festival

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